Port Noise Festival First Lineup Announced Ben Woods Delaney Davidson Womb Half Hexagon More

Chris Cudby / Ben Woods photo credit: Emma Wallbanks
/ Tuesday 10th January, 2023 1:10PM


Happening across four stages on Saturday 11th March, an all-star first lineup has been revealed for Ōhinehau / Lyttelton’s inaugural Port Noise festival. Taking over Loons, Lyttelton Coffee Company and Wünderbar, the multi-venue event features not only artistically adventurous special guests from all around Aotearoa, but also record stalls and the enticing prospect of karaoke. Read the official word direct from the organisers and stay tuned for a spine-tingling second announcement…

"Our first lineup release includes crooner gone honk Ben Woods, the return of squelch-hell rockers The Dance Asthmatics, swamp country legend and rural ventriloquist Delaney Davidson, moody hitmaker Ferby, flowing dance dreamboats Glass Vaults, beat hypnotherapists Half Hexagon, modular warehouse raver Horatio Kane, four-to-the-floor master Keepsakes, horrorshow grinders Wet Specimen, and everyone’s favourite psychedelic slow-motion family band Womb.

In a space curated to embrace the industrial grime of our town while expanding the limits of what one may expect from a music festival–– we invite both audience and artist alike to come bask in the wild glory of this shared true telling of the self."

Port Noise

Ben Woods, The Dance Asthmatics, Delaney Davidson, Ferby, Glass Vaults, Half Hexagon, Horatio Kane, Keepsakes, Wet Specimen, Womb

Saturday 11th March – The Loons, Lyttelton Coffee Company, Wunderbar, Ōhinehau / Lyttelton

Tickets on sale HERE via UTR

Experience Ben Woods’ 2022 short film Dispeller…

Here’s Womb’s video for ‘Oceans’ from their new album Dreaming of the Future Again…

Take in the wild visuals for Keepsakes’ pounding 2022 track ‘Peak Egotist’, created by Damian Golfinopoulos of Grecco Romank…

Press release:

We are happy to announce our first lineup reveal of Port Noise, a festival of music happening in Ōhinehou Lyttelton on March 11th. Taking place at neighbouring local venues Loons, Lyttelton Coffee Company, and Wünderbar, Port Noise aims to showcase a diverse selection of artists from around Aotearoa on four stages.


Marlon Williams Announces Support Acts For My Boy Aotearoa Tour

Chris Cudby
/ Tuesday 13th December, 2022 8:00AM


It’s been a significant year for Lyttelton songwriting icon Marlon Williams, who launched his chart-topping third solo album My Boy in September and scooped up a finalist nomination for the prestigious 2022 APRA Silver Scroll Award. Celebrating his new record in style with a five date tour of some of Aotearoa’s finest venues this coming January, Williams has today announced special guest supports for his My Boy nationwide tour. Joining the artist on stage this summer will be a different hand-picked opening act for every date — fellow Lyttelton legend and long-term collaborator Delaney Davidson at Dunedin’s Regent Theatre, CBS Choir (Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament Choir) at Christchurch Town Hall, and sibling dream trio Womb at Wellington’s Michael Fowler Centre, while Auckland attendees will be treated to performance by either Nadia Reid or Vera Ellen, depending on which Auckland Town Hall event they’re heading along to. Scope out the updated tour details below and treat yourself and / or a buddy to the perfect Christmas gift — a ticket to see Marlon Williams with his band The Yarra Benders and friends…

UnderTheRadar proudly presents…

Marlon Williams ‘My Boy’ Aotearoa Tour

Thursday 19th January – The Civic, Auckland w/ Nadia Reid
Friday 20th January – Civic Theatre, Auckland w/ Vera Ellen [sold out]
Wednesday 25th January – Michael Fowler Centre, Wellington w/ Womb
Friday 27th January — Town Hall, Christchurch w/ CBS Choir*
Saturday 28th January – Regent Theatre, Dunedin w/ Delaney Davidson∞

Auckland and Wellington tickets at www.ticketmaster.co.nz

*Christchurch tickets at www.ticketek.co.nz

∞Dunedin tickets at www.regenttheatre.co.nz

Groove along with Marlon Williams’ irresistibly catchy title track to his new long player My Boy…

Press release:

Marlon Williams has just announced that he will be joined by a different special guest at each of his ‘My Boy’’ tour shows this January.

The concert at The Civic in Auckland on Friday 20th January is now sold out with tickets in all other cities selling fast.
Joining Marlon at The Civic in Auckland on Thursday 19th January is an artist who needs no introduction – Nadia Reid. Acclaimed New Zealand musician Nadia Reid is praised the world over for her intimate, complex songwriting. She is described by The Guardian as ‘an understated, wise guise through uncertain territory’ while her lyrics are called ‘allegorical… brutally honest’ by The Revue. Reid is currently working on her fourth album.

The following evening Friday 20th January at The Civic will be opened by Vera Ellen. Vera Ellen is a Wellington/Los Angeles based multi-instrumentalist and wildly prolific songwriter, who some may recognise from LA band Girl Friday (Hardly Art), or grungy NZ 4-piece Maple Syrup. The artist’s Flying Nun debut, It’s Your Birthday, is stacked full of hooked-to-the-brim melodies, and cleverly guided by Vera’s clear, confident and relaxed vocal presence. Vera Ellen recently picked up an Aotearoa Music Award for Best Alternative Album.

In Wellington at the Michael Fowler Centre local band Womb will bring their shoegaze pop sounds to life. Made up of siblings Cello and Haz Forrester plus the addition of Georgette Brown, Womb have been recording and touring since their debut EP release in 2015. Sophomore album Dreaming Of The Future Again was released just out last month via Flying Nun Records!

Close to Marlon’s heart, the CBS Choir will welcome the audience at the Town Hall in Christchurch with their beautiful renditions. Marlon and band member Ben Woolley cut their teeth singing and touring internationally with the CBS Choir as teenagers. Choir Director Don Whelan was an early musical mentor for Marlon and he has invited the choir to perform some of his personal favourites for a special full circle moment.

And finally, for the last show of the tour in Dunedin. friend and collaborator Delaney Davidson performs at The Regent theatre. One of the most distinctive figures in the NZ musical Landscape, Delaney Davidson is well known for his hypnotic and original live performances. Currently working on his 10th album, the enigmatic multi-instrumentalist is often found playing in tiny nooks around the world but lucky fans can catch him in person in Dunedin with Marlon Williams this summer!

After a whirlwind year of releasing #1 Top 40 album My Boy and playing two international tours Marlon Williams and his band The Yarra Benders are primed to give fans a taste of new music and a world class performance.

These are Marlon’s first full band shows since headlining the 2020 Laneway Festival and with such eclectic and engaging opening acts this tour just got a whole lot better.


New Years Eve Eve ft Delaney Davidson Roy Montgomery Emily Fairlight Outsiders More

Chris Cudby / Photo credit: Gerry le Roux
/ Monday 12th December, 2022 1:58PM


Sun’s out, the birdies are chirping and Aotearoa songwriting icon Delaney Davidson has announced his summer New Years Eve Eve extravaganza, capping off a wild 2022 at Lyttelton Coffee Company on (as the name strongly suggests) 30th December. An annual tradition hosted by the multi award-winning artist, this year’s NYEE will showcase performances by the legendary Roy Montgomery, Emily Fairlight and band, Ōtautahi all-stars Outsiders (including members of The Terminals, Renderers, Axemen + more) who launched their Manumit EP earlier this year, DJs Kiran Dass and Grans Remedy, and of course the Trash Recital star himself with surprise guests. Promising "a wild and friendly summer late night in the harbour", we advise grabbing tickets for this very special night out pronto…

New Years Eve Eve
Featuring… Delaney Davidson, Roy Montgomery, Emily Fairlight, Outsiders, DJs Kiran Dass and Grans Remedy

Friday 30th December – Lyttelton Coffee Company, Lyttelton

Tickets available HERE via UTR

Experience Delaney Davidson’s spellbinding 2020 rendition of Split Enz’s ‘One Step Ahead’…

Listen to ‘Cowboy Mouth (For Sam Shepard)’ from Roy Montgomery’s new album Island of Lost Souls…

Here’s ‘Head Above’ from Emily Fairlight and The Shifting Sands’ 2022 album Sun Casts a Shadow…

Hit play on Outsiders’ 2022 Manumit EP…

Press release:

Continuing the series of traditional it’s not New Years eve its the night before events, Delaney wrangles together the 23 edition. Roy Montgomery, Emily Fairlight and Band, Outsiders hot off their album release, and Delaney Davidson with surprise guests.

Come and lose those Christmas slugs, get amongst the community and become yourself again after the family contortions. DJ’s Kiran Dass and Grans Remedy will blow your mind!!

A wild and friendly summer late night in the harbour.


Aotearoa Gigs For The Weekend

Chris Cudby / Image: Delaney Davidson
/ Thursday 26th May, 2022 10:03AM


A simply smashing weekend for live events happening across Aotearoa — delve into our diverse selection of gigs below, plus more HERE. Don’t go deleting your vax pass just yet, as many venues still require the Vaccine Pass on entry (useful info on updating your pass is available HERE) and you’ll need to bring your I.D. too. Secure your spot by grabbing presale tickets while you can…

If you’re planning a live show and / or tour in the near future, we’re here to help with our free (for organisers) ticketing service — you can get the ball rolling by adding your gig HERE.

Thursday 26th May

A Night With Ha The Unclear – Whammy Bar, Auckland, tickets HERE

Yoko-Zuna Plays Daft Punk – Ponsonby Social Club, Auckland [sold out]

Delaney Davidson – The Wine Cellar, Auckland

Len Blake – San Fran, Wellington, tickets HERE

The Renderers – Meow, Wellington

Sometime Winner, Midnight Caffeine, Black-Sale House – U Bar, Dunedin, tickets HERE

Friday 27th May

The Renderers – Leigh Sawmill Cafe, Leigh, tickets HERE

Thabani Gapara Project – Ponsonby Social Club, Auckland, tickets HERE

Tipene – Anthology Lounge, Auckland, tickets HERE

Ringlets, Sweet Pea – The Wine Cellar, Auckland, tickets HERE

Parasitic Infestation, Soul Void, Rvkkvs, Grave Axis – The Thirsty Dog, Auckland, tickets HERE

Daniel Armstrong And The Monsoons – The Tuning Fork, Auckland
Bad Taste, Ray Leslie, Underwelly, Mikeyy, Bizznet – Valhalla, Wellington, tickets HERE

Grand Exchange Presented By Wgtn Speedballing Intl. – Birdcage, Wellington, tickets HERE

Al Park, Adam McGrath & Jess Shanks, Adam Hattaway & Tess Liautaud – The Loons, Lyttelton, tickets HERE

Papa Odyssey, Marsha, This Dog, Layaround – darkroom, Christchurch, tickets HERE

Man Ray, Porpoise, The Beatniks – Dive, Dunedin, tickets HERE

Fierce Love: Spoken Word, Songs, Sound – Taste Nature, Dunedin, tickets HERE

Saturday 28th May

Sam Bartells Unplugged – Ponsonby Social Club, Auckland, tickets HERE

The Renderers – The Wine Cellar, Auckland [sold out]

Ron Gallipoli’s An Imposter, Kraus – Polish Assn, Auckland, tickets HERE

What Happens In Vegas… w/ Peter Urlich, Murry Sweetpants – Las Vegas Club, Auckland, tickets HERE

Neil Feather – Nondo, w/ Rosie Langabeer, Phil Dadson, Tim Shacklock – Audio Foundation, Auckland, tickets HERE

Video Nasty, Coffin Club, Cold Sweats – Cupid Bar, Auckland, tickets HERE

The Otis Mace Combo, Superturtle, Will Saunders – Clare Inn Irish Pub, Auckland, tickets HERE

Amanaki, Chasing South, Melanie, Jiahu Symbols, This Machine Means Murder – Cityside Baptist Church, Auckland, tickets HERE

Tipene – The Whitianga Hotel, Whitianga, tickets HERE

The Dark Eighties Meets Eighties Forever – Nivara Lounge, Hamilton, tickets HERE

The Takeover Event – RPM, Cambridge, tickets HERE

The Inquiry – Paisley Stage, Napier, tickets HERE

Dark Ichor, Unlawful Arise, Fuzz Drive – Thistle Hall, Wellington, tickets HERE

Freq Nasty – Roots Bar, Takaka, tickets HERE

Coverpalooza – Bark @ Dog With Two Tails, Dunedin, tickets HERE

Sunday 29th May

The Renderers – Artworks Theatre, Waiheke Island, tickets HERE

Delaney Davidson – The Wine Cellar, Auckland, tickets HERE

Head over to our GIG GUIDE for more listings!!

Performing this Friday and Sunday at Tāmaki Makaurau’s The Wine Cellar, watch the video for Delaney Davidson‘s collaborative single with fellow modern day cowboy Marlon Williams ‘Bloodletter’…


Troy Kingi Wins Best Folk Artist T For Black Sea Golden Ladder

Chris Cudby
/ Monday 2nd May, 2022 11:22AM


The massively multi-talented Troy Kingi (Te Arawa, Ngāpuhi, Te Whānau-ā-Apanui) received another prestigious award for the mantelpiece on Saturday, taking away the 2022 Te Kaipuoro Taketake Toa / Best Folk Artist Tūī for his album Black Sea Golden Ladder. Written with Lyttelton icon Delaney Davidson, Black Sea Golden Ladder is Kingi’s latest contribution his ambitious 10 10 10 series: 10 albums, 10 different genres, 10 years. Described by the artist as "the most personal of all my albums — the first one I feel that is truly about me," the record was followed up with a visual album of the same name, featuring videos for every song created by an array of local directors. Also winner of the 2021 Silver Scroll award (presented in March ’22), Kingi is touring Black Sea Golden Ladder with Davidson and live band The Senses in August, head over to his site HERE for details…

Experience Black Sea Golden Ladder – The Visual Album in full — featuring videos for every song by directors Dahnu Graham, Hayden Aull, Huhana Ruri-Panapa, Marara Katipa, Nicole Horan, Thomas Rose and Xavier Horan, edited by Huhana Ruri-Panapa

‘Black Sea Golden Ladder’ is out now on major streaming services via AAA Records.


Delaney Davidson Announces Auckland Show At The Wine Cellar

Chris Cudby
/ Wednesday 20th April, 2022 10:21AM


Lyttelton’s Delaney Davidson returns to Tāmaki Makaurau’s The Wine Cellar for a very special headline event in late May, the ever-questing songwriter’s first super city show since Omicron blasted through Aotearoa’s musical landscape. Promising to play "new songs in an intimate setting," you never quite know who will drop by or what to expect from the inimitable award-winning artist — previous Wine Cellar performances have featured surprise on-stage appearances from such superstar talents as Marlon Williams. Currently Massey University’s artist in residence for 2022 and 2023, the in-demand Davidson recently lent his songwriting skills to the new Tami Neilson / Willie Nelson single, Troy Kingi’s latest album Black Sea Golden Ladder, a collaborative record with Barry Saunders (plus a new one in the pipeline) as well as Sin City’s debut long player — don’t delay in securing your spot to catch the legend in action…

Delaney Davidson Live

Thursday 26th May – The Wine Cellar, Auckland

Tickets available HERE via UTR

Watch Delaney Davidson’s video for ‘Such A Loser’ from his 2018 solo album Shining Day…


Tami Neilson Duets With Willie Nelson On Beyond The Stars

Chris Cudby / Photo credit: Sophia Bayly
/ Thursday 14th April, 2022 1:53PM


Tami Neilson unites with US country icon Willie Nelson on her new single ‘Beyond The Stars‘, heralding the launch of the Canadian-born, Aotearoa-based songwriter’s fifth studio album Kingmaker in July. Released following the vocally gifted pair’s recent onstage performance together at Nelson’s 10th anniversary Luck Reunion event (see a little snippet HERE), the touching ballad captures "Neilson’s pain at the loss of her father and her longing to be with him once again," co-written with Delaney Davidson. Experience the video below and investigate very swish t-shirts celebrating the momentous single HERE

“Having Willie be the voice of my father in this duet is just something beyond my wildest dreams… I cried for three days after it was recorded, listening to it and thinking about how absolutely overwhelmed and proud my Dad, a musician and a huge Willie Nelson fan, would have been.” – Tami Neilson

Tami Neilson’s ‘Kingmaker’ launches on Friday 15th July.


Theias TE KAAHU Shares Live Single Kiwi Weka

Annabel Kean / Friday 10th December, 2021 2:25PM


TE KAAHU, the reo Māori project of Tāmaki hip hop queen Theia (Waikato-Tainui, Ngaati Tiipaa), has shared a stunning live rendition of waiata ‘Kiwi Weka’, recorded at Te Noho Kotahitanga Marae as part of her RNZ Live Session earlier this year. Due to drop her debut album as TE KAAHU in the new year, today’s heart-melting single won’t actually feature on that collection of original songs, as it was written by her late great grandmother Mite Te Aho Karaka Kukutai. Released instead as a stand alone track, TE KAAHU says she wanted to record ‘Kiwi Weka’ "as a resource for my iwi and also as her great granddaughter" after realising the song wasn’t on any streaming sites. Totally goosebumps-inducing, the intimate live number features HINA on backing vocals, Delaney Davidson on lap steel guitar and Jol Mulholland on acoustic guitar…

The debut album from TE KAAHU drops in 2022.


Sin City Unveil Single Video By The River

Chris Cudby
/ Friday 10th December, 2021 12:41PM


Summer in Aotearoa can bring good times in the sun for some, but for many it can be a lonely experience throughout the festive season. Tāmaki Makaurau’s Sin City sound like they know a thing or two about sorrow with tear jerker ‘By The River‘, pondering the single life once more as they spin a misty-eyed tale of romance on the rocks. Recorded with Delaney Davidson on bass, John Segovia on lap steel and Alistair Deverick (Boycrush) on drums, the core duo of Jack Beesley and Nick Armstrong‘s self-directed video hammers their heartfelt message home with golden-toned footage of rustic roadside vistas. It’s the soulful latest treat from Sin City’s forthcoming debut full length opus Welcome to Sin City, due out in February 2022 via 1:12 Records — watch the clip for ‘By The River’ here…

‘By The River’ is out now via major streaming services.


Troy Kingi with Delaney Davidson Black Sea Golden Ladder Tour New Dates Announced

Chris Cudby
/ Tuesday 7th December, 2021 11:23AM


There’s been something of a tsunami of show announcements over the past few days, as we move into Aotearoa’s happily less restricted traffic light era. Leading the charge is Taite Music Prize winner Troy Kingi (Te Arawa, Ngāpuhi, Te Whānau-ā-Apanui), who has today announced a brand new set of dates for his necessarily rescheduled Black Sea Golden Ladder tour with Delaney Davidson, touring their folk-infused collaborative record which originally launched in June (along with an anthology-like visual album) before Delta hit locally. A brief rundown of what Kingi has been up to this year could send less prolific artists (ie. pretty much everyone) running to the hills. His 2021 releases include the collaborative soundtrack (as P. Smith) for drama series The Panthers with Diggy Dupé and choicevaughan, a single from a forthcoming long player with The Nudge, a new te reo Māori version of his classic ‘Aztechknowledgey‘ for Waiata Anthems week, and he scooped up a finalist spot for the Silver Scroll Award. Tour mate Davidson has a second record with The Warratahs frontman Barry Saunders due out soon, don’t miss both incomparable artists singing songs from Black Sea Golden Ladder at the new dates below…

Troy Kingi with Delaney Davidson – Black Sea Golden Ladder Tour 2022

Friday 25th March – James Hay Theatre, Christchurch
Friday 1st April – Glenroy Auditorium, Dunedin
Sunday 3rd April – Theatre Royal, Nelson
Friday 22nd April 2022 – Opera House, Wellington
Sunday 24th April – Town Hall, Auckland

Tickets and more info available via TroyKingi.com
All tickets previously purchased from authorised outlets remain valid for the rescheduled shows without the need for exchange

Experience Black Sea Golden Ladder – The Visual Album…


NYEE Christchurch Show Announced Ft Barry Saunders Delaney Davidson Adam Hattaway More

Chris Cudby / Image: Delaney Davidson and Barry Saunders
/ Tuesday 7th December, 2021 10:16AM


After all of 2021’s madness, we all deserve a knees-up to help round out the year and get back on track. Lyttelton’s The Loons are hosting one heck of a pre-New Year’s Eve extravaganza starring a legendary cast of Canterbury musical figures, including Barry Saunders (The Warratahs), Delaney Davidson, Adam Hattaway & The Haunters, DJ Pinky Fang, Al Park and Tess Liautaud. As the title of Davidson and Saunders’ sparkling new song assuredly declares ‘Happiness Is Near‘ — last year’s show sold out, we recommend you grab tickets while you can to experience this top tier lineup, plus don’t forget to bring your vaccine pass…

NYEE (It’s Not New Year’s Eve, It’s The Night Before)

Feat. Barry Saunders, Delaney Davidson, Adam Hattaway & The Haunters, DJ Pinky Fang, Al Park, Tess Liautaud

Thursday 30th December – The Loons, Lyttelton

Tickets available HERE via UTR

Watch the video for Delaney Davidson and Barry Saunders’s yet to be released new song ‘Happiness is Near’…

Check out the clip for Adam Hattaway and The Haunters’ ‘Riding the River’, from their brand new double album Rooster…

Press release:

Get rid of the lockdown blues. Come out on New Years Eve EVE to the Loons Dec 30th! That’s right!! Not new years eve but the night before!!

Featuring Barry Saunders, Delaney Davidson, Adam Hattaway & The Haunters, Pinky Fang, Al Park, and Tess Liautaud.

Join these musical comrades and ride the rolling night of mutation and celebration.

Vaccine pass required for entry. This event will take place under the traffic light system in ‘Orange’ or ‘Green’. If the event is canceled due to COVID19 all tickets will be fully refundable.


Track By Track Adam Hattaway And The Haunters New Album Rooster

Annabel Kean / Friday 19th November, 2021 9:55AM


Recorded at Sublime Studios over four long days and weighing in at 22 tracks heavy, Adam Hattaway And The Haunters‘ bluesy new double album Rooster is a magnificent country beast. Out today on all the usual streaming places just eight months after the Ōtautahi outfit shared their third album Woolston, Texas, Rooster is something of a response and antidote to a far longer than desired release schedule last time around, as well as a way to catch up with their own songwriting speed. As is the case with all good country albums, every track on Rooster comes with a story – there’s the improvisational session with Delaney Davidson that birthed ‘Riding The River’, a day spent searching and failing to find an old friend’s grave, leading to the penning of ‘Bring My Body Back Home’, then there’s the four odd tracks that came to Hattaway in his dreams. Read all about those tales and more in our exclusive Rooster track by track below – you’ll surely find a talking point or two to strike up conversation when you see Hattaway and his Haunters on their nationwide tour this summer…

Adam Hattaway And The Haunters

Friday 26th November – Space Academy, Christchurch w/ Anthea De Milo*

Saturday 27th November – Settlers Hall, Barrytown*

Wednesday 1st December – San Fran, Wellington

Friday 3rd December – Whanganui Musicians Club, Whanganui w/ MeanOwls

Saturday 4th December – Space Ship, Hastings*

Sunday 2nd January – The Space At The Free House, Nelson*

Tuesday 4th January – The Golden Bear, Mapua

Friday 7th January – The Grand, Akaroa

Thursday 27th January – The Wine Cellar, Auckland*

Friday 28th January – YOT Club, Raglan w/ Mini Simmons

Saturday 29th January – Lukes Kitchen, Kūaotunu w/ Mini Simmons

Sunday 30th January – Leigh Sawmill, Leigh w/ Mini Simmons

*Tickets available HERE via UTR

∞tickets available HERE via UTR

1. Back In Jail

There is another Adam Hattaway. He’s in and out of prison. He inspired this song – I don’t know what his crimes are, so I made them up. This song features Adam on piano, Elmore on Rhodes, and no Guitars! Oh apart from that acoustic. Damnit!

2. ‘Riding The River’

I wrote this one with Delaney Gaviscon [sic]. We sat down and wrote ten or twelve theoretical song titles. We then pressed record for each song and made them all up on the spot. Although we had enough other tunes for this record, the Haunters had been playing it live and really felt, with its roots vibe and straight rock groove, it’d really fit on Rooster! It also features Ratbert on Cowbell. We panned both the creepy whispers and the lead vocals in the bridge left to right all psychedelic like! This song we went most crazy with on the mix actually. Elmore took 3 passes at a guitar solo and we used all 3! They mesh surprisingly well, along with some glammy "Ahhh ha!” BVs and some other BVs in the bridge which Elmore likes to refer to as “Adam the human theremin”.

3. ‘Honor Lee’

This song was written by our good friend Al Park. We just loved the tune and wanted to include it on our album as although there are a lot of country flavours, we wanted just one tune that was out and out classic country, complete with a cheeky yodel at the end.

4. ‘Waiting For The Chill’

This song was recorded feverishly by Elmore and Adam alone in the studio in less than an hour. We found a demo of this song from the previous year and could barely remember it but we thought it was a cool song. Because this song that we barely knew was recorded and changed so quickly, when we heard it back at the end of the sessions, we could barely remember it – this is for me, one of those magic studio moments and probably partly why it’s my favourite song on the record.

5. ‘It’s Hard’

Written as a kinda throwaway in lockdown, this simple fun straight ahead rocker was smashed out in one take, and is also the only song to keep the original guide vocals. It name drops our friend, Christchurch songwriter Laura Lee Lovely. Why? Why the fuck not!

6. ‘Atlanta’

This song came to me in a dream and I based it around the idea of someone wanting to get back home but being torn between that, and starting a new life. Also, the bad Adam Hattaway comes from Atlanta.

7. ‘The Thing’

We like a bit of silly fun. I was gonna sing ‘Tupelo’ by John Lee Hooker but then this just came outta my mouth – go figure.

8. ‘Only Game In Town’

This track, along with ‘Bring my body back home’, ‘Ivory town’, ‘Dial’, ‘Waiting for the chill’ features just Adam on bass, guitar and vocals, and Elmore on drums, percussion and guitar but this song has no overdubs whatsoever. The bridge attempts to venture into Kinks and Beach Boys territory harmonically. The idea of using a bunch of complex chord moves in a country song but staying away from the putrid stench of JAZZ is interesting to us.

9. ‘Keep Walking’

I woke up with this song in my head one day. We’d tried it lotsa different ways but ended up overcooking it. I then played it solo with an acoustic guitar and realised that it needed to be stripped back to that style where it worked best. Of course we couldn’t resist having the full band on it, but it kept its stripped back vibe.

10. ‘Cold Cold Wind’

I wrote this song in a dream. We played a gig in Dunedin in December last year with our friend Flora Knight on fiddle. This song sounded great with her on it, and partly inspired us to go and do this record as we felt we could pull off an old school country sound. Of course, she smashes it on this track!

11. ‘Honey Don’t Lie’

I wrote this song in my dream and I’d been listening exclusively to Waylon Jennings for a couple weeks, and reading his autobiography – go figure! This track was cut in my favourite evening of recording – around midnight over a couple bottles of Sublime made red wine we cut this track, ‘Mama you made a drinker’, ‘It’s hard’… and… something else, I forget. We added horns to a few songs back in CHCH and Auckland – something we’d been hoping would fit back in our music for a long time.

12. ‘It’s Too Late’

This song is the oldest one on the record – written about a year and half earlier, before the Woolston, Texas sessions, it didn’t fit on that record and was also hard to get right live. We switched the feel from swung to straight and nailed it for this record. Features a killer sax solo from the one and only Nick Atkinson. It’s about NOSTALGIA and trying to move forward past those teenage memories.

13. ‘I Hardly Exist’

This song is one of the only to have very few or no overdubs and very little post studio mixing. Something that recording to 4 track lends itself to. The lyrics are pretty self explanatory and come from being straight up depressed.

14. ‘Blood Moon’

We love playing this song live and due to its classic 12 bar blues form, we feel like it wouldn’t have fit on anything BUT a country rock roots double album.

15. ‘Don’t Touch That Dial’

A double album needs dynamics – peaks and troughs in order to keep the journey interesting. This sweet little love song features just Elmore on acoustic guitar, Adam singing and Mike Kime’s bowed double bass. The track omits Elmore’s outburst when he kept messing up the intro – my one regret being not leaving that on the recording!

16. ‘Crime Of The Century’

Elmore sent this track to me in lockdown and I had a go at the vocals for him and sent it back. A great feeling at the time was that we could work together over the internet and keep writing. He was inspired by all the serial killer books he’d been reading.

17. ‘Whatever This Is’

A classic country song at its core funked up a bit with added horns! Adam drunkenly forgot to sing and his comment halfway through the song is legit. We added a fun little trumpet solo to go with the gag afterwards.

18. ‘Ain’t It My Job’

A Liam Quinn penned number – one of only 2 in the Haunters catalogue so far!! It features him on acoustic and Elmore on Bass. Gina, sitting in the control room said “it sounds bit like Wilco’ So I went in and tried to do a Wilco solo, #noregrets!

19. ‘You Made A Drinking Man’

In this song, I imagine the differences and similarities between me and the bad Adam Hattaway. It features Elmore’s kitty kat.

20. ‘Bring My Body Back Home’

We stopped in Temuka on the way down to try to find the grave of a friend who’d taken his life 2 years earlier. A theme that runs consistent in the Haunters music, I wrote this one for Rat who was very close with the song’s subject. The song was only half written but after the strange and sad experience of wandering around the cemetery and unfortunately failing in locating the grave, I sat down on the first night at the studio and finished the song.

21. ‘Rooster’

Wherever you come and wherever you go, you ain’t got nothing on Elmore Jones.

22. ‘Iv’ry Town’

Ben Woods was telling me how to write songs better and I was getting frustrated and then a little rat swung down on a vine and sung this song in my ear. That of course happened in my dream but this song is as real as blood.

Adam Hattaway And The Haunters’ double album ‘Rooster’ is out today on CD and streaming services.


Darkroom and Space Academy Fundraiser Compilation DarkSpace Launched

Chris Cudby / Artwork credit: Spencer D. Hall
/ Friday 1st October, 2021 4:00PM


Ōtautahi’s musical community has banded together during thin times for live shows in support of darkroom and Space Academy, both of whom provide absolutely crucial gig space for a wide range of Aotearoa’s brightest talents. Curated by Violet French and stacked to the brim with twenty five tunes, all generously contributed by a multi-generational lineup of artists, DarkSpace: A Fundraiser to Help Fill the Void delivers an awesome snapshot of Canterbury’s bustling music scene — including "b-sides, rarities, demos, covers, and deep cuts" by local champs Delaney Davidson, Laura Lee Lovely, Minisnap, Hex Waves, Martin Sagadin, Ryan Fisherman, Dark Matter, Best Bets, Opawa 45s and many more. If you wait until the fee-waiving Bandcamp Friday initiative begins at 8pm NZST tonight before purchasing, you’ll be safe in the knowledge that 100% of your funds will go direct to this most excellent of causes. Here’s the full lowdown from the organisers…

"In the face of uncertainty; amongst alert level restrictions, wage subsidy applications, and reschedule after reschedule. DarkSpace aims to help fill the void left by Covids’ second wave; and to help secure the future of two of Aotearoas’ favourite destination venues- Darkroom and Space Academy.

Like penguins, the community has huddled together to keep the cold out of these two beloved institutions. This compilation of b-sides, rarities, demos, covers, and deep cuts, is a cross section of not only our musicians; but multi-disciplinary artists. All works have been gifted to this collection, and sees the likes of Delaney Davidson, Flying Nun alumni Dark Matter and Minisnap, alongside indie darlings such as Lucy Hunter, the Waltham Home Organ Society, Ryan Fisherman, The Wendys and Laura Lee Lovely (to name a few), banding together to raise funds for these venues.

While the annual festival can’t take place, DarkSpace; A Fundraiser to Help Fill the Void can be re-lived again, and again and again."


Premiere Delaney Davidson and Barry Saunders Share Video Happiness Is Near

Chris Cudby
/ Friday 1st October, 2021 8:34AM


Co-recipients of the 2020 Tui award for Best Country Artist, Delaney Davidson and Barry Saunders (The Warratahs) have reunited with ‘Happiness is Near‘, a new video for an as-yet unreleased song by the pair that we’re proud to premiere for you today. A teaser for a forthcoming second collection from the legendary team that gave us 2019’s Word Gets Around, ‘Happiness is Near’ was originally inspired by a cheerful phrase Saunders spotted while watching late night Russian TV, then polished off in collaboration with Davidson. A superb showcase for their golden vocal tones, the tune exudes tangible rustic charm as the worldy duo ponder the idea of good times yet to come with a sparkle in their eye. Davidson’s scene-setting lyric video doesn’t dispel the song’s mystique in the slightest, rolling down a dark highway no doubt zooming from show to show, with a classy font to help us all sing along. Presently gearing up to tour with Troy Kingi in November and December, Davidson gave us the full lowdown…

"Happiness is Near”. Barry Saunders saw it on late night Russian TV, written in English on a wall behind a broadcaster. It stuck in his head. Then he and Delaney Davidson started banging it around on an old, out-of-tune 12-string and it stuck at the heart of their next collection of songs.

They say the sentiment really fit with how they were feeling then, but has come into a whole other context now.

When the world is taking huge steps, and we are sitting in uncertain times. Waiting and watching to see where things might go or what we should do. It can feel like losing momentum, like fear and doubt.

This is a reminder that there’s something friendly waiting down the road. From the middle of isolation and loss, looking back, it’s easy to forget… but there are good times around the corner! You can walk these days and remember them any way that you want.

Kia kaha Aotearoa. Kia ora Aotearoa. Kei te tata te hari." — Delaney Davidson


New Dates For Troy Kingi with Delaney Davidsons Black Sea Golden Ladder Tour

Chris Cudby
/ Wednesday 29th September, 2021 12:00PM


It’s no exaggeration to say Troy Kingi (Te Arawa, Ngāpuhi, Te Whānau-ā-Apanui) has been on one heck of a creative hot streak in 2021. This year the Taite Music Prize winning artist released new album Black Sea Golden Ladder with Lyttelton legend Delaney Davidson, an hour-long accompanying visual album featuring videos for every song, the collaborative soundtrack (as P. Smith) for gripping drama series The Panthers with Diggy Dupé and choicevaughan, a single from a new album with The Nudge, a new te reo Māori version of his classic ‘Aztechknowledgey‘ for Waiata Anthems week, and scooped up a finalist spot for the Silver Scroll Award. The unstoppable Kingi sure isn’t going to let our pesky current Covid woes get in the way of delivering the goods to fans, announcing today rescheduled dates for the second half of his Black Sea Golden Ladder nationwide tour with Delaney Davidson. Witness two iconic Aotearoa artists making history together on stage at the following dates…

Troy Kingi with Delaney Davidson – Black Sea Golden Ladder Tour

Saturday 20th November – James Hay Theatre, Christchurch (previously Sat 21 Aug)
Sunday 21st November – Theatre Royal, Nelson (previously Tue 17 Aug)
Friday 26th November – Glenroy Auditorium, Dunedin *NEW VENUE (previously Sun 22 Aug)

Sunday 5th December – Opera House, Wellington (previously Sat 28 Aug), with live band The Senses
Friday 10th December – Town Hall, Auckland (previously Sat 4 Sept)
, with live band The Senses

Tickets and more info available via TroyKingi.com

Experience Black Sea Golden Ladder – The Visual Album…


TE KAAHU Performs Rangirara E Hine For RNZ Music

Chris Cudby / Photo credit: Frances Carter
/ Wednesday 15th September, 2021 1:50PM


In celebration of Te Wiki o te Reo Māori / Māori Language Week the RNZ Music team have shared superb footage of TE KAAHU, the te reo Māori project of Theia aka Em Walker (Waikato-Tainui, Ngāti Tiipaa), performing her latest single ‘Rangirara‘ plus recent waiata ‘E Hine Ē‘ with live band at Mt Albert’s Te Noho Kotahitanga wharenui. Meaning "beyond the heavens", ‘Rangirara’ is named after Theia’s grandmother, while ‘E Hine Ē’ is described by the artist as “a waiata aroha. It is for any girl or woman you have loved or ever will love".  The live session features none other than Lyttelton legend Delaney Davidson and Jol Mulholland on guitar, and HINA on vocals, playing stunning renditions of both tunes you can experience below…

"Tautokongia ngaa kaitito Maaori me tooku reo rangatira! Support Māori composers and my chiefly language!" – Theia

‘Rangirara’ and ‘E Hine Ē’ are out now on major streaming services.


Sin City Unleash Single Video Things I Left Behind

Chris Cudby
/ Friday 3rd September, 2021 4:03PM


Tāmaki Makaurau duo Sin City have revealed to the world the lead single from their debut album Welcome To Sin City, produced by indefatigable Lyttelton icon Delaney Davidson and heading your way in early 2022 via the champs at 1:12 Records. A ramblin’ country-rock reflection on life on the road, the heartwarming ‘Things I Left Behind‘ launched today with a video directed by Bertrand Remaut, documenting a whiskey-soaked motel knees up (likely filmed at Royal Oak’s Dukes Midway Lodge by the looks of that guitar-shaped swimming pool). By the end of the clip it’s well past time for Sin City to saddle up and hit the dusty trail once more — crossed fingers gigs are back in action for their headline show at Lyttelton’s Wunderbar on 10th September…

‘Things I Left Behind’ is out now via major streaming services.


Delaney Davidson Performs Disassociate From Myself UTR Trash Recital Episode 8

Sports Team / C.C.
/ Thursday 12th August, 2021 10:35AM


We’re stoked to share the eighth episode of our new web series created in collaboration with the talented gang at Sports Team: UTR Trash Recital!

For each episode of Trash Recital we’ve invited some of our favourite Aotearoa artists into the UTR studios to perform one of their signature songs, re-created using everyday items selected from a treasure trove of literal trash, collected by Sports Team from Tāmaki Makaurau’s finest op shops / second hand stores. Trash Recital not only provides a launchpad for stunning reimaginings of recent classic tunes, but also the perfect opportunity for a chinwag with our local musical heroes.

This week’s guest is none other than Lyttelton icon Delaney Davidson, whose award-winning oeuvre includes collaborations with seemingly every notable Aotearoa artist, along with his own spellbinding and ever-expanding catalogue of solo recordings. Currently touring the nation with Troy Kingi in celebration of new album Black Sea Golden Ladder (co-written by Davidson), the always inventive songwriter treated us to brand new song ‘Disassociate From Myself‘, originally written with The Phoenix Foundation’s Samuel Flynn Scott. Witness the mysterious multi-instrumentalist using the infamous UTR Trash Pile™ to whip up a musical masterpiece before your very eyes and ears…

Troy Kingi with Delaney Davidson – Black Sea Golden Ladder Tour

Thursday 12th August – Clarence St Theatre, Hamilton

Friday 13th August – Theatre Royal, New Plymouth

Sunday 15th August – Opera House, Whanganui

Tuesday 17th August – Theatre Royal, Nelson

Saturday 21st August – James Hay Theatre, Christchurch

Sunday 22nd August – Regent Theatre, Dunedin

Saturday 28th August – Opera House, Wellington w/ live band The Senses
Saturday 4th September – Town Hall, Auckland 
w/ live band The Senses

Tickets available via TroyKingi.com

DOP: Callum Devlin

Editor: Callum Devlin

Title Animator: Annabel Kean

Sound Engineer: Ruby Walsh

Sound Mix: Ruby Walsh

Theme Tune: Callum Devlin

Project Manager: Annabel Kean

Production Team: Sports Team

UTR Production Team: Daryl Fincham & Chris Cudby

Special thanks to Bob Frisbee

Made with support from NZ On Air

Listen to Delaney Davidson and Barry Saunders’ album Word Gets Around — 2020 winners of RMNZ’s Best Country Music Artist Award…


Watch Troy Kingis Black Sea Golden Ladder The Visual Album

Chris Cudby
/ Tuesday 27th July, 2021 12:33PM


Troy Kingi (Te Arawa, Ngāpuhi, Te Whānau-ā-Apanui) has treated fans to an hour-long cinematic creation accompanying his latest album Black Sea Golden Ladder — the fifth in the 2020 Taite Music Prize winning songwriter and actor’s 10 10 10 series of genre-spanning long players. Created in collaboration with Lyttelton icon Delaney Davidson, Kingi stated his folk-tinted record is "the most personal of all my albums – the first one I feel that is truly about me". The film showcases all-new video works created for each song from the record by directors Dahnu Graham, Hayden Aull, Huhana Ruri-Panapa, Marara Katipa, Nicole Horan, Thomas Rose and Xavier Horan, edited by Huhana Ruri-Panapa. Not dissimilar to an anthology collection, the visual album is tied together by a poetic framing sequence in Te Reo Māori, starring Kingi frequenting a mysterious bar outside of time, viewing different points in Aotearoa people’s lives firsthand almost Quantum Leap-style. Described as "an exploration of the human experience that spans from childhood to death" and packing a hefty emotional punch when experienced in its entirety, watch Black Sea Golden Ladder – The Visual Album below and don’t miss Kingi and Davidson touring together in August and September…

Troy Kingi with Delaney Davidson – Black Sea Golden Ladder Tour

Saturday 7 August – Turner Centre, Kerikeri

Sunday 8 August – Leigh Sawmill, Leigh

Tuesday 10 August – Forum North, Whangarei

Thursday 12 August – Clarence St Theatre, Hamilton

Friday 13 August – Theatre Royal, New Plymouth

Sunday 15 August – Opera House, Whanganui

Tuesday 17 August – Theatre Royal, Nelson

Saturday 21 August – James Hay Theatre, Christchurch

Sunday 22 August – Regent Theatre, Dunedin

Saturday 28 August – Opera House, Wellington w/ live band The Senses
Saturday 4 September – Town Hall, Auckland 
w/ live band The Senses

Tickets available via TroyKingi.com

Troy Kingi’s ‘Black Sea Golden Ladder’ is out now via AAA Records.


Listen To Troy Kingis New Album Black Sea Golden Ladder

Annabel Kean / Friday 18th June, 2021 10:28AM


Troy Kingi (Te Arawa, Ngāpuhi, Te Whānau-ā-Apanui) shares Black Sea Golden Ladder, a collection of folk songs written in collaboration with award-winning, genre-spanning songwriter Delaney Davidson. This is Kingi’s fifth album in his 10 10 10 Series, and marks the halfway point of his ambitious project with what he says is "the most personal of all my albums – the first one I feel that is truly about me". Black Sea Golden Ladder is different not only in style, but in how the duo crafted each track — digging deep into Kingi’s memories from primary school to fatherhood over the course of just a few days, with Davidson falling into the role "somewhat of a shrink". It was also part of Pōneke’s Matairangi Mahi Toi Artist Residency, which was established in 2016 specially to nurture the creative endeavours of Māori and Pasifika.

From singles ‘Call My Name’ and ‘Sleep’ you couldn’t know the paths Kingi would take on the full album. He lets his voice soar in epic, expansive track ‘You In My Arms’, and explores folk nooks and crannies across musical metaphors for Love, The Meaning, Mortality and more. Catch these two icons in the flesh this August on the not-to-be-missed Black Sea Golden Ladder Aotearoa tour

Troy Kingi with Delaney Davidson – Black Sea Golden Ladder Tour

Saturday 7 August – Turner Centre, Kerikeri

Sunday 8 August – Leigh Sawmill, Leigh

Tuesday 10 August – Forum North, Whangarei

Thursday 12 August – Clarence St Theatre, Hamilton

Friday 13 August – Theatre Royal, New Plymouth

Sunday 15 August – Opera House, Whanganui

Tuesday 17 August – Theatre Royal, Nelson

Saturday 21 August – James Hay Theatre, Christchurch

Sunday 22 August – Regent Theatre, Dunedin

Saturday 28 August – Opera House, Wellington w/ live band The Senses
Saturday 4 September – Town Hall, Auckland 
w/ live band The Senses

Tickets available via TroyKingi.com

Troy Kingi’s ‘Black Sea Golden Ladder’ is out now via AAA Records.


Live Photos Mansfield In Her Own Words Michael Fowler Centre Wellington

Annabel Kean / Photography by Bruce Mackay / Tuesday 15th June, 2021 1:09PM


Charlotte YatesMansfield project is reaching crescendo this month with two enormous ensemble Mansfield – In Her Own Words shows, the first of which made poetry-meets-music magic last night at Pōneke’s Michael Fowler Centre. The artists featured on the Mansfield compilation brought the poetry of Katherine Mansfield back to life, transforming her words into modern day pop, rock, folk and soul. Anna Coddington (who celebrated her birthday last night — happy birthday Anna!) opened the evening before returning to the stage to sing alongside Lawrence Arabia; Delaney Davidson put on an entrancing performance of his contribution ‘Pic-Nic’; and Lontalius, The Bats, Lorina Harding, Julia Deans, Charlotte Yates herself, and the rest of the impressive Mansfield troupe all took turns commemorating the important works of one of Aotearoa’s greatest poets. The full bill will be convoying up the North Island for their Tāmaki show at the Bruce Mason Centre this Sunday. Frequent UTR contributor Bruce Mackay captured the evening in high definition, take a look via the thumbnails below to see what all the fuss is about…

View all photos

Troy Kingi with Delaney Davidson Black Sea Golden Ladder Tour Announced

Chris Cudby
/ Friday 4th June, 2021 8:00AM


Two of Aotearoa’s most celebrated songwriters, 2020 Taite Music Prize winner Troy Kingi and Arts Foundation Laureate Award recipient Delaney Davidson, are teaming up to tour the nation together in August and September. They’ll be regaling audiences with songs from Kingi’s forthcoming album Black Sea Golden Ladder, the fifth studio long player in his ambitious and wildly successful 10 10 10 Series (10 albums in 10 years in 10 genres). Written over an intensive four day period with Davidson, who also also plays a variety of instruments on the record, Black Sea Golden Ladder finds Kingi embracing a folk musical palette and considering the various stages of life. He says "It is the most personal of all my albums – the first one I feel that is truly about me."

To say these collaborative shows will be a rare treat for gig-goers is an understatement indeed. Don’t miss these two incomparable artists at the following dates, and scroll downwards to experience their video for Kingi’s tender-toned new single ‘Sleep‘.

Davidson spoke of the songwriting process,“Troy wanted these songs to be about the human experience. What is life? What are the things people unite over? The common threads that weave a life together. I started asking him what his thoughts on these times were; fatherhood, love, work, childhood etc. I was trying to get to the essence of what he thought, we always started by talking and stripping it back to get to the core of the message.”

Kingi says "…Delaney took it on himself to be somewhat of a shrink, digging deep into my memories, deep into my subconscious to find my own experiences of these different facets which in the end led us to this album Black Sea Golden Ladder."

Troy Kingi with Delaney Davidson – Black Sea Golden Ladder Tour

Saturday 7 August – Turner Centre, Kerikeri

Sunday 8 August – Leigh Sawmill, Leigh

Tuesday 10 August – Forum North, Whangarei

Thursday 12 August – Clarence St Theatre, Hamilton

Friday 13 August – Theatre Royal, New Plymouth

Sunday 15 August – Opera House, Whanganui

Tuesday 17 August – Theatre Royal, Nelson

Saturday 21 August – James Hay Theatre, Christchurch

Sunday 22 August – Regent Theatre, Dunedin

Saturday 28 August – Opera House, Wellington w/ live band The Senses
Saturday 4 September – Town Hall, Auckland 
w/ live band The Senses

Tickets on sale from 12pm, Thursday 10th June via TroyKingi.com

Black Sea Golden Ladder is out on Friday 18th June on CD and vinyl LP through Border and available on all digital platforms.

Press release:

Troy Kingi’s fifth, ("folk") instalment, in his 1O 1O 1O Series, (10 albums in 10 years in 10 genres) is due for release June 18th.

A collaboration with award winning artist and producer Delaney Davidson, this album was written and recorded as part of the Matairangi Mahi Toi Artist Residency in Wellington – a partnership be-tween the Governor General and Massey University that was established in 2016 to encourage and promote the development of Māori and Pasifika visual arts and creative practices.

As artist in residence Troy had the opportunity to live as a guest in a cottage at Government House and also to be involved in workshops and outreach programmes with secondary & tertiary stu-dents.

"It is the most personal of all my albums – the first one I feel that is truly about me." Troy Kingi – KeriKeri, April 2021

Troy Kingi and Delaney Davidson will take to the road this August, playing the album live, in shows across the country.

Troy Kingi with Delaney Davidson – Black Sea Golden Ladder Tour


Troy Kingi Announces New Album Shares Single Video Call My Name

Annabel Kean / Friday 14th May, 2021 10:15AM


Troy Kingi is inching closer to the halfway point of his 10 10 10 Series: Ten albums, ten genres, ten years. Wrapping up the roll out of the funkified The Ghost of Freddie Cesar, Kingi now swaps out his soul stylings for folk twang and twelves strings on Black Sea Golden Ladder. Co-produced with Ōtautahi folk / country stalwart Delaney Davidson, who also plays a variety of instruments on the record, Kingi says "It is the most personal of all my albums – the first one I feel that is truly about me", and was written over an intensive four day period at the Matairangi Mahi Toi Artist Residency apartment on Pōneke’s Clyde Wharf, created with support from NZ On Air. Each track dives deep into a different part of life, from birth to death, with the lead single ‘Call My Name’ unearthing school day memories, written by Davidson, Kingi and Kingi’s daughter. Shot at the Youth And Adults In the Music Industry Summit in Wanaka earlier this month (where the duo performed and ran workshops) the vintage-look video features summit attendees to the knee-slapping new tune…

Troy Kingi’s ‘Black Sea Golden Ladder’ is out June 18th via AAA Records.


New Dates Announced For Mansfield In Her Own Words Shows

Annabel Kean / Image: Anna Coddington / Friday 9th April, 2021 2:22PM


At last the brains and brawn of 2020’s Mansfield compilation have got a couple of dates locked in to perform their musical reimaginings of iconic New Zealand writer Katherine Mansfield‘s poems. Every track featured on the Charlotte Yates-curated collection can be experienced live at Auckland’s Bruce Mason Centre and Wellington’s Michael Fowler Centre in June. The multi-band format will be accompanied by "a narrated, curated selection of Katherine Mansfield’s visceral letters", a task taken on by Aotearoa film and tv hot shot Miranda Harcourt. Where else are you going to see Anna Coddington, Lawrence Arabia, Lontalius, Mel Parsons, The Bats, Julia Deans, Delaney Davidson and more in one magical evening? Lock in your spot to attend this incomparable event…

Mansfield – In Her Own Words

Featuring… Anna Coddington, Lawrence Arabia, Lontalius, Mel Parsons, Will Ricketts & Toby Laing, Lorina Harding, Charlotte Yates (w/ Darren Mathiassen), Show Pony & Johnny Lawrence, The Bats, Julia Deans, French For Rabbits, Tusiata Avia, Delaney Davidson

Monday 14th June – Michael Fowler Centre, Wellington

Sunday 20th June – Bruce Mason Centre, Auckland

Find tickets HERE via Ticketmaster


Primer Auckland Arts Festival 2021 Live Music Events

Annabel Kean / Image: Shayne Carter, Delaney Davidson, Theia / Tuesday 16th March, 2021 2:55PM


With the Auckland Arts Festival confirmed to be back in action following last Friday’s return to Alert Level 1 in the super city, allow me to guide you through the newly update programme’s musical offerings and must-sees for 2021. This year’s AAF theme is Aroha, and instead of splitting events into categories of dance, theatre, comedy, etc., the shows have each been grouped into one of three aroha offshoots: Aroha ki ngā kōrero (the respect we hold for our stories), Aroha ki te tangata (kindness, compassion and goodwill toward people) and aroha ki te taiao (our love and care for our natural environment). Of course these all intersect, as do the various disciplines showcased in the festival, so it’s been a tricky task whittling down a personalised calendar for you, The UTR Reader.  Yes I know Che-Fu was amazing and I should have gone and everyone had the time of their life, but it’s already happened so I won’t be mentioning it. Here are a few of our hot picks of what’s to come on the music performance side of the tracks for AAF— note: some events are now happening on new dates, with more rescheduled shows to be announced

Auckland Arts Festival 2021

Extended to 11th April
Full updated programme and ticket details available at aaf.co.nz

Wednesday 17th March – Chelsea Jade & deryk, The Civic Club (tickets HERE)

Back from the US, Chelsea Jade takes her outstanding live performance to The Civic Club with fellow pop up-and-comer deryk. Chelsea Jade began the gradual roll out of her next album with single ‘Superfan’ in April last year…

Thursday 18th March – French For Rabbits, The Civic Club (tickets HERE)

The Pōneke-based team of Brooke Singer, John Fitzgerald, Hikurangi Schaverien-Kaa, Ben Lemi (Trinity Roots) and Penelope Esplin (Grawlixes, Dam Dans) will preview new material from French for Rabbits’ forthcoming new album in the starry surrounds of The Civic Club. Experience an enchanting first taste with their latest single and video ‘The Dark Arts’…

Thursday 18th March & Friday 19th March – Anthonie Tonnon’s Rail Land, MOTAT (tickets HERE)

From a deep interest in Aotearoa’s railway system and history grew Anthonie Tonnon’s Rail Land series, leading audiences along decades old tracks and forgotten train routes before serenading them with his stunning solo performances. Most recently Tonnon sung out about the ongoing tragedy of the Mataura Paper Mill

Friday 19th March – Anna Coddington, The Civic Club (tickets HERE)

Taite Music Prize 2021 finalist Anna Coddington (Fly My Pretties) performs songs from her new album Beams plus highlights from her back catalogue, with full band featuring Jol Mulholland, Mike Hall (Pluto), Steph Brown and Fen Ikner (LIPS), along with bespoke visual artworks created in response to the live show by Greta Menzies. Take in Anna Coddington’s riveting video for ‘Do I Exist’ from Beams…

Friday 19th March – HINE! feat. Betty-Anne Monga (Ardijah), HINA, Disciple Pati, Jhasmyne and Emily Muli, The Civic Club (tickets HERE)

Betty-Anne Monga (Ardijah) performs alongside an all wāhine new generation of rising stars including HINA, Disciple Pati, Jhasmyne and Emily Muli, for a "supreme showcase of musical prowess" at The Civic Club. Experience Disciple Pati’s recently released anthem ‘Essence’ produced by Leaping Tiger…

Saturday 20th March – Spell On You with Delaney Davidson, Shayne Carter, Theia, The Civic Club (tickets HERE)

Three of New Zealand’s boldest voices come together with special guests to put a spell over the audience for one night only. You’ve likely heard of Shayne Carter (Straitjacket Fits, Dimmer), and Delaney Davidson from his huge body of work and Marlon Williams collaborations, but get to know the incredible talent of Theia in her live performance of original Christmas song ‘Te Kaiwhakaora O Te Ao’…

Sunday 21st March – Estère, The Civic Club (tickets HERE)

Fresh from the roll out of her latest collection Archetypes, Pōneke powerhouse Estère presents part-album release show, part-performance Into The Belly of Capricorn, blending her Archetypes opus with an exploration into its themes. Dive into the otherworldly visuals for her AAF show title single…

Sunday 21st March – Taonga Moana, Auckland Town Hall (tickets HERE)

Aotearoa’s premier chamber choir presents: A love letter to the oceans. Voices New Zealand will take you along an emotional, choral journey, told through the migratory path of the kuaka (godwit), from the Arctic to the Antarctic…

Monday 22nd March – Carnivorous Plant Society, The Civic Club (tickets HERE)

Cinematic super group and soundscape specialists Carnivorous Plant Society will immerse you in aural storytelling and world building through folk, jazz and pop. Watch the twee / psych animated visuals for their new single ‘My Mu Is Proud Of Me’…

Press release:



Te Ahurei Toi o Tāmaki | March 2021

Auckland Arts Festival/Te Ahurei Toi o Tāmaki (AAF) welcomes the government decision this morning that Tāmaki Makaurau would return to Covid Alert Level 1 at midday today (Friday 12 March).

It has been a rollercoaster of a fortnight, following the announcement that Auckland would enter a Covid Alert Level 3 lockdown at 6am on Sunday 28 February for seven days.

Due to open on Thursday 4 March, the first section of AAF 2021 was put on pause and the Festival team have worked around the clock to reschedule the majority of works planned for 4-12 March. A full and regularly updated list of show status updates is available here.

A return to Alert Level 1 today allows the Festival to go ahead with its planned schedule, including the much anticipated Che-Fu & The Kratez: Return of the Navigator (Saturday 13 March, 8pm), E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial feat. APO (Saturday 13 March, 7pm) and its Community Day activities on Sunday. Taki Rua Productions’ Sing to Me, which had its Auckland premiere last night at Q Theatre according to Alert Level 2 protocols, continues its season with shows tonight (Friday 12 March, 7.30pm) and tomorrow (Saturday 13 March, 2.00pm and 7.30pm).

Due to the timing of the alert level announcement, all shows and events in The Civic Club for 12-14 March will go ahead with the audience seated in the auditorium stalls instead of onstage. Affected shows include Heavenly Bodies, which opens tonight (Friday 12 March, 8.30pm), Open Stage: Scenes from a Yellow Peril (Saturday 13 March, 1.30pm) and Gitbox Rebellion (Sunday 14 March, 4.00pm). Shows and events in The Civic Club from Tuesday 16 March will go ahead with onstage seating for audiences, as per The Club’s original design.

AAF opened yesterday morning (11 March) with a karakia and ceremony to unveil and bless the Festival’s new Mauri stone, attended by representatives of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei, Festival staff and AAF 2021 artists. The gathering observed the limits on crowd numbers and physical distancing requirements of Alert Level 2. Acts of Love launched with A Figure Exhales in the window of Smith & Caughey’s (Queen St side) mid-afternoon, which continues until Sunday.

Other shows and events that can now go ahead in their intended form include Love to say goodbye (Friday 12 and Saturday 13 March, 7pm), Siva Afi Festival (Friday 12 and Saturday 13 March, 7pm), Tigilau Ness and Friends at the Festival Garden, Aotea Square (Saturday 13 March, 6.30pm) and He Owha Matarua / Hauntology of Inheritance (Saturday 13 March and Sunday 14 March, 2.00pm). Author Pauline Smith and members of the Polynesian Panthers RAPP present an In-depth talk at Studio One, Toi Tū tonight (Friday 12 March, 6pm) in relation to AAF’s Polynesian Panthers 50th Anniversary programming.

The rescheduled events from the AAF 2021 talk series, Living with Uncertainty and Arts + Climate Innovation: Coexistence with our Natural World will now take place on Sunday 14 March at Herald Theatre, Aotea Centre. Cian Parker’s one-woman gem Sorry for your Loss plays at Warkworth Town Hall as part of our regional offering tomorrow evening (Saturday 13 March, 7pm).

The important visual art exhibitions The Dawn Raids – Educate to Liberate at Studio One; A Very Different World at Te Tuhi and Papatūnga; Edith and George: in our sea of islands at Corbans Estate Arts Centre; and The Thrum of the Tide at Te Uru had opened ahead of the Level 3 lockdown that began on 28 February.

John Miller and Elisapeta Heta’s Pouwātū: Active Presence was able to open on Tuesday 9 March according to Alert Level 2 protocols, and work began also on Tuesday 9 March on the Educate to Liberate Polynesian Panthers mural, on the corner of Karangahape Rd and Gundry St.

The 2021 Festival is the first of four with Shona McCullagh (MNZM) in the role of Artistic Director. Arts Foundation Laureate McCullagh founded and led The New Zealand Dance Company as Chief Executive/Artistic Director since its establishment in 2012, and joined AAF in March 2020.

“The whole Festival team is deeply relieved and truly energised, after an extremely tough fortnight, by the announcement that we can now press go on our preparations to return to Level 1 presentation of our beautiful artists. We have been frustrated by the delay in the announcement which has meant we don’t have time to realise our The Civic Club venue set-up as it was intended for this weekend, but we are so eager to share the aroha of our Festival with our patient and devoted audience. Kōkiri! Let’s go!” says McCullagh.

Ataahua Papa, AAF Kaihautū Māori joins in celebrating the alert level change stating, “Hurō! E harikoa ana mātou o Te Ahurei Toi o Tāmaki i te hekenga ki te pae tuatahi! Kāti, me haere tonu te ngahau! Yay, AAF are sooooo happy to be in Level 1. Now, let the fun continue!”

AAF Chief Executive David Inns is also extremely happy with the news: “At a time when the performance sector is in flux around the world, we are extremely grateful to be able to go ahead with Auckland Arts Festival in 2021. The recent lockdown presented its challenges, but the Festival team has done an incredible job of responding to the situation, and we are still confident that we have an excellent presentation in store for Tāmaki Makaurau.”


Live Photos Delaney Davidson and Barry Saunders Amba Holly Meow Wellington

C.C. / Photo credit: Gerry Le Roux
/ Monday 15th February, 2021 10:08AM


Two generations of local legends, the 2020 Tui award winning-team of Delaney Davidson and Barry Saunders (The Warratahs), concluded their summer tour in style at the capital’s Meow on Friday night. Performing with band, they were supported by 2019 Waiata Māori Music Award-winning, Waikato-Tainui musician Amba Holly, making for a truly top-tier bill for Pōneke punters to sink their teeth into. Photographer Gerry Le Roux was front and centre to capture the on-stage magic, click around on the thumbnail images below to view the full gallery…

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Live Photos Come Together Neil Youngs Live Rust The Opera House Wellington

Chris Cudby / Bruce Mackay
/ Monday 18th January, 2021 10:02AM


Lyttelton icon Delaney Davidson was one of the many local superstars playing the songs of Neil Young for Come Together to the delight of punters in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch late last week. Featuring such significant figures as Jon Toogood, Samuel Flynn Scott, Liam Finn, Dianne Swann and many more, rattling off Young’s seminal 1979 record Live Rust, previous Come Together outings in late 2020 showcased similarly stacked lineups performing The Beatles’ Abbey Road and Dire Straits’ Brothers in Arms. Photography champ Bruce Mackay documented Friday’s event in the opulent surrounds of Pōneke’s The Opera House, and even snapped an ace pic of the artists striking a pose backstage, as well as the full setlist (which in fact concluded a mite early with ‘Heart Of Gold’). Click around on the thumbnail images below to view the full gallery, and don’t miss Davidson touring Aotearoa this summer with Barry Saunders

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Heres Five Troy Kingi Unveils His Favourite Ghost Songs

Chris Cudby / Troy Kingi
/ Tuesday 12th January, 2021 9:56AM


Riding high from winning the 2020 Taite Music Prize for his politically charged dub-reggae opus Holy Colony Burning Acres, Troy Kingi is ready to embark on the next phase of his decade-long 10 10 10 Series. Seemingly designed to test whether there are any limits at all to the songwriter / actor’s talents, Kingi’s massively ambitious project aims to release 10 albums in 10 years in 10 genres, with the forthcoming fifth instalment being a folk-inspired collaboration with none other than Lyttelton icon Delaney Davidson. Kingi will be giving fans a very special preview of the new record as part of The 48th Auckland Folk Festival lineup (which also features Delaney Davidson & Barry Saunders and many more), happening at Kumeu Showgrounds over Auckland Anniversary weekend in late January / early February — hot on the heels of the last year’s funk-soul long player The Ghost of Freddie Cesar, a reflection on childhood and memories of family life, sparked by the discovery of a mysterious cassette tape while going through his missing father’s belongings in 2007.

In advance of his 2021 Auckland Folk Festival appearance, Troy Kingi generously name-checked some of his favourite ghost-themed tunes and provided accompanying words of wisdom. Delve into his spiritual selections below and don’t you dare miss Kingi this summer…

The 48t​h​ Auckland Folk Festival – Kumeu Showgrounds, Auckland

Auckland Anniversary weekend – Friday 29th January to Monday 1st February 2021

Featuring… Troy Kingi, The Eastern, Delaney Davidson & Barry Saunders, The Black Quartet, The Harmonic Resonators, Aro, Jenny Mitchell, BEING., Looking for Alaska, Sadie & Jay, Liddiard and Louise, Gerry Paul and The Elephant Tree Band, Shimna’s List, Rough Town, Raylee Bradfield, Songs from the Old Country, Ethno Aotearoa, Polytropos, John Sutherland, Rhubarb, Gavin & Cara

Tickets are on sale now via Eventfinda (children under 10 are free all weekend)

Head over to www.aucklandfolkfestival.co.nz for the 2021 Auckland Folk Festival timetable

1. Johnny Cash – Ghost Riders in the Sky

I recently had the chance to cover this for a tv commercial, also – Johnny Cash is the Shit.

2. Radiohead – Give up the Ghost

Thom Yorke has the most haunting voice in history – hands down.

3. Spirit – The Other Song

Bit of a cheat – but this song by Spirit would be in my top 20 songs of all time.

4. Ghostface Killa & Adrian Younge – Get The Money

Another cheat but I had to find a way to get Adrian Younge’s production in there, thank you Ghostface.

5. Ray Parker Jr – Ghostbusters theme song

Can’t have a list without the granddaddy of them all.

Troy Kingi’s latest album ‘The Ghost of Freddie Cesar’ is out now digitally, on compact disc and limited edition vinyl LP via Triple A Records.


UTRs 2020 Favourite Music Moments

UTR Team and Contributors / Thursday 17th December, 2020 11:04AM


We’ve nearly made it to the end of a year that even Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern described as "horrendous", but before we bounce from the office for some long-awaited summer fun, it’s time to unveil our 2020 Music Moments. We invited contributors who’ve generously leant their talents to the site over the past twelve months to share their reflections on an incomparable year.

Special thanks to everyone who contributed to our proudly independent music news and ticketing site in 2020 — to NZ On Air, NZ Music Commission and MusicHelps for their support in helping us bring you the best local music news during the wildest of times, to all the artists for producing such inspiring work, to the events organisers who gave us awesome live shows to look forward to, and thanks to you dear reader for making it all worthwhile! Dive in, explore and enjoy the selections below, and don’t forget to check out (if you haven’t already) our 86 track 2020 End Of Year Playlist



Ngā Tuone by Riki Gooch, performed as part of the Jazz Premier Series for the Wellington Jazz Festival

It feels wrong to categorise this as a ‘live’ experience considering that I spent most of the performance morphing between Nonexistence and Being in the astral plane. Gooch developed a gestural language with 11 musicians to conduct this improvised set through four movements: Nothingness; Birth, Chaos of Life; Death and Transcendence. Al Fraser’s swinging a feedback mic around the church ceiling. The saxophonist is scraping at a thumb piano with a bell. There are ping pong balls flying all over the place. Weirdly, I don’t think I’ve ever seen the nature of the universe in more clarity.

Chris Knox, live at Deep Dive Festival

The world doesn’t have another Chris Knox, and I honestly never thought I’d get a chance to see him perform. And to be fair, I didn’t exactly see him at Deep Dive. I was wedged at the back by the sound desk, weaving my head side to side to try to get a glimpse, while Knox’s poetry rattled around the room on waves of laughter and bated breaths. Reps from every generation and wave of Aotearoa’s punk scene were together that night, listening to wisdom, stories, perspectives that only we can decipher with our modest and brilliant cultural dialect. I think we were all aware in those precious minutes that we really owe so much to Chris. I’ll never forget that feeling.

Wax Chattels – Clot

I cannot get enough of the sound that opens ‘Cede’. It’s like I’ve spent my life in sleep mode, and suddenly someone’s turned on my computer. There’s something jaw clenching and focused and powerful about it that perfectly prefaces the force of Amanda Cheng’s lyrics in this track. The album is a masterpiece that deals with the fucked state of the world head on without dipping me into any kind of self pitying remorse. Huge, terrifying, empowering, enraging. Honorary mention to Connor Crawford’s photo of Peter Ruddell, the visual embodiment of the sound.

Minyo Crusaders, live at WOMAD

Honestly this was the most wholesome live music experience of my year. I went to WOMAD to celebrate the wedding of my best mates. The whole whānau from across the whenua was there, and as the stars came out over Ngāmotu we took off our shoes and danced under trees glowing above the stage lights. The band is on a mission to retain and reinvigorate Japan’s min’yō traditions, and use cumbia sounds to keep the folk stories and their lessons alive. It was uplifting, it asked us to remember who we are, it showed how joyous we can be when we are together. Their first album is one of my most played, and is quickly becoming the soundtrack of my life.

The moment Tom Scott’s mic hits the floor after the final line of ‘Home’, live at the Wellington Opera House

I’d seen Avantdale Bowling Club before so I knew I was going to vibe, but I hadn’t expected a second live experience to be so affecting. The band was relaxed and connected on that strange field of consciousness that jazz musicians get. But they left the stage for this track and gave Scott the floor. It was so satisfying to see that finally, now that we can’t get international acts over, musicians in Aotearoa have access to these large local platforms where they can speak to their experience and get a crowd to realise that we have shit to do, and we don’t have to accept the status quo. Scott’s been saying it for years, and it never loses its power. ‘Livin off the misery of Māori, milking the manaakitanga as if parliament’s a party that her man’s DJing at. But I ain’t playing that, I jumped up in an Uber and told the pilot to take me back home.’



Everything Noa Records did

I haven’t been this jazzed about a record label since I was 16 and thought knowing cat numbers was the height of cool. Every release on Noa Records this year felt like it was sent from an alternate timeline where 2020 wasn’t shit and the future was Happening Now. If you haven’t copped the Virtual Shadow Ensemble LP yet, do it now.

Deb5000 Halloween Show at The Vault

Nothing says Halloween like a giant cockroach playing a coffin shaped guitar and warning you about your rat boyfriend. He’s got a rat hand! He’s got a rat face! He was a rat all along!

Louisa Nicklin and Babyteeth doing ‘Teenage Dirtbag

Hey, this one’s me! Some of us still haven’t gotten over being a teenager, that’s why some of us start pop punk bands. Getting on stage and yelping out this Wheatus classic with a bunch of friends definitely exorcised a few demons, and worked out much cheaper than therapy.

Up In Smoke – Reuben Winter Memorial Gig

I have never felt time so plastic and compressed as when ROIDZ played a song they’d once recorded with Reuben in our Sandringham living room, that they’d once played Chronophonium something like a decade ago and Reuben said we absolutely had to go see them. Gonna watch Galaxy Quest this Christmas and think of you Reuben.


I cried to a lot of music in 2020. A hyperpop cover of ‘About You Now’ by Sugababes, an Al Green song that came on the supermarket, pretty much every track Roy Irwin and PHF put out, I even cried to one of the ABBA tracks where the boy ones sing. But nothing quite hit that earnest, hopeful, Stay True Young Emo sweet spot like this one.



Charli XCX

Back when Corona was just a beer and I thought slugs were snails without a shell, I enjoyed one of my purest moments of festival glee. By the time Charli XCX took to the Ranger Stage at Laneway 2020, I’d gained the obnoxious confidence of someone who’d had several lagers and a few somethings elses, granting me the gall to snake my way through the hundreds of people who’d actually arrived early enough for a good spot. To make matters worse (better), Charli encouraged the crowd to get up on someone’s shoulders for the last song, so I immediately tapped the broad-shouldered stranger in front of me who graciously hoisted me up. Plot twist: The stranger was none other that UTR alum Fluffy, of Lemon Pepper and Hoisin Sauce fame.

Taylor Swift – Folklore

Let’s just say the opening line "I’m doing good, I’m on some new shit" really summed up my year.

The Beths’ Auckland Town Hall Show

This year I was stupidly lucky to play a wee part in the emotionally-charged Beths Auckland Town Hall show, the last stop in their Jump Rope Gazers Aotearoa tour. With the enthusiasm of Phoebe Buffay put in charge of cups and ice, I borrowed approx. fifty houseplants, took the band for two bird-lantern craft sessions, and put together a film crew uniform complete with iron-on pineapples. The night lead to happy tears and a very full heart, even if it did end with returning five hanging plants to Josy Cafe with a prop ladder at 3am.

Suzy Cato BFF

Circa 1999, a very small, starstruck Annabel was too scared to have her photo taken with Suzy Cato at Christchurch’s Cashmere Club. In 2017, I hid in my journalism school classroom, frozen with fear as Suzy Cato took the neighbouring class for a lesson, not willing to risk a potential hallway run-in. This year, I was seated at the Aotearoa Music Awards just one row down from a lonely Cato. It may have taken an hour to pluck up the rosé-induced courage, but eventually I invited her to join my party, where she sat next to me the whole night and became my new best friend. The End.

Kōtiro – ‘Force Field’

I’m forever in awe of Ana Scotney’s off-the-charts charisma and magnetism. Not only is the video for ‘Force Field’ overflowing with both of those things, she’s also planted a seed deep in my brain telling me I should incorporate a pink mouthguard into my summer wardrobe. She really rocks the pink mouthguard.



Reb Fountain – When Gods Lie

The rise of Reb: I’ve been a fan of Reb Fountain for years — she inhabits her songs so well, vividly painted, full of character and grit. Her new album is my favourite yet, and I’m so excited to see the rest of the world cottoning on to our best kept secret!

Hand Habits – House Concert in Wellington

Hand Habits performed an intimate house concert in Wellington in February, before making it home to the US only a week or two before the lockdown. I discovered their music while at an Aldous Harding concert in LA, and was instantly hooked on Meg’s guitar playing and songwriting. It felt like such a special occasion — little did we know it would be one of our last shows for a long time! A bonus highlight for this year has been the amazing live streamed performances — including this one by Angel Olsen and Hand Habits.

2020, the year of creation

This year has been the year of creation — from Charli XCX’s How I’m Feeling Now to Taylor Swifts Folklore – many artists have been tucked away in homes and studios filling suddenly empty tour schedules with new music. It’s honestly been a joy to be able to focus purely on creativity — and I’m so happy I could do this personally for French for Rabbits, maybe we’ve made our best record yet… we’ll see! My prediction is for a very busy year of new releases in 2021.

Helena Massey – Brothers, Puffins & Half Skulls

I had a few favourite albums this year — those by Fiona Apple, Moses Sumney, Adrianne Lenker, Phoebe Bridgers and This is the Kit definitely soundtracked the year. But the one I listened to and loved the most was a Home Alone release by Australian singer and guitarist Helena Massey. I’m a big advocate for ‘slow music’, the kind that doesn’t necessarily fit easily into the digital world because it doesn’t provide an instant sugar rush. Her album is definitely of the "slower release" kind — it rewards on repeat listens. Highly recommended!

Sheep, Dog & Wolf – ‘Two-Minds’

Like ‘Glare’ back in 2014, ‘Two-Minds’ is a dense, emotional and anxiety-inducing listen…looking forward to the record!



Queen playing Wellington

Standing in front of 33000 people taking pictures of one of the biggest bands to play on this planet was rather spectacular. Only bad bit, was the security not being able to count to three, and chucking us photographers out of the pit after the second song…

Obituary and Wormrot at San Fran

This show was so close to not happening. Flights were delayed and Obituary’s guitars failed to arrive. Thankfully back up gear was found at the last moment. What made it special for me, was seeing Obituary play their whole album ‘Cause Of Death’. First time I saw Obituary, they had just released that album and I saw them perform it at the London Marquee in 91.

Take Shelter Festival

Load of crusty punk bands turn up with a PA at the bunkers overlooking Wellington Airport, perform an incredibly loud gig for a couple of hours, and tidy the place up before heading home. What’s not to like?!!!

Everyone helping keep our venues going

Covid has been a kick in the teeth for everyone, but it was great seeing people pulling together and raising money for our venues with all sorts of schemes. I must admit, I actually enjoyed sitting down at the odd covid show, but it is great having things back to normal.

Bob Vylan

Bob has been quite consistent this year with his releases of grime and punk. His music certainly isn’t pretty while delving into racism, drugs and shankings. But growing up on the outskirts of London, it does also bring back some fond memories of home.



Save Our Venues

Easy to take for granted now, but back in April it looked like our entire live gig scene could be wiped off the map by the twin forces of Covid and bloodsucking vampires venue landlords. Thankfully that hasn’t turned out to be the case, largely due to our community rallying together to raise funds for independent venues across Aotearoa in a pinch. If you donated and / or helped raise funds for Save Our Venues or any other related initiatives (eg. MusicHelps), you are a fucking champion, straight up.

Livestream shows

There was an astounding moment that occurred just after lockdown’s sudden onset, when nearly every gigging musician in NZ added livestream shows to their toolset in about the space of two weeks, due to every live show being cancelled / postponed simultaneously. Everybody had a crack at it, including me. There were tricky technical aspects to navigate (where do you buy audio-visual cables when all the stores are closed?), but there was genuine innovation in the air when, for a certain period, rules were out the window. Artists such as Stef Animal, Delaney Davidson and The Beths proved to be masters of the emerging medium, beamed out online by such crucial DIY initiatives as Melted Ice Cream’s Better Living, Everyone! fest.

Use No Hooks – Do The Job

The non-stop soundtrack to my apartment’s work from home schedule, we went deep into Chapter Music’s collection of little known / unheard songs by Use No Hooks, supplemented by a sampling of Aussie horror films over on streaming service Shudder. These early 80s Melbourne post-punks interrogated the politics of everyday office culture with a hefty dose of disco grooves and lyrical bite — unbelievable that such killer tunes could have been sitting on the shelf for nearly 40 years.

Vanessa Worm – Vanessa 77

Vanessa Worm’s album Vanessa 77 is a stunning debut, somehow injecting the wild spirit of Ōtepoti’s noisy underground into global contemporary club contexts. ‘Heaven To Hell’ is the first song I heard from Worm and I wasn’t sure what I was even hearing — always a good sign — plus she’s responsible for one of best live performances I saw this year, absolutely slaying (and crowd surfing) at Friendly Potential’s two night Catacombs dance party.

[NSFW not music bonus pick: Simon Hanselmann’s Crisis Zone serial comic strip over on his Instagram page. For many readers the words ‘Carrot Bottom’ represent an unforgettable highlight of 2020]

Totems – ‘Stunt 151’

There’s no way I can talk about this year without acknowledging the passing of a giant in our community and an artist that I always felt lucky to be friends with — Reuben Samuel Winter (Waitaha / Kāi Tahu / Te Aupōuri / Te Rarawa / Ngāti Kuri), the mega-talented mastermind behind Totems, milk and many other legendary projects. He gave us a daringly diverse back catalogue of music to be inspired by and memories to cherish. Word is there’ll be releases to look forward to in the near future, but I loved his ultra-cool appearance in the video for ‘Stunt 151’ when it dropped in May…


Delaney Davidson livestream

During lockdown Delaney put together the most captivating, smoke filled journey into his mind over a live stream through Instagram.

Soda Boyz – Farewell Spit

A great sounding, despondent guitar filled album by one of the most interesting bands from NZ.

The Subliminals: Whammy Bar

A live show with people! Every song sounding as great as it ever did, The Subliminals played to a pack-out Whammy Bar, after an earlier Covid Cancellation

The Beths winning Album of the Year for Jump Rope Gazers

A proud dad type moment when you follow a band coming up from small gigs to selling out iconic Powerstaton then winning Album of the Year.

Moon Duo at Hollywood Cinema

Certainly doesn’t feel like that took place this year, but a standout event put together will all the vibes needed by local legend promoter Matthew Crawley.
Memorable hats off to the 3d box light show.


One of my favourite things is when you get to talk music with other musicians. Talking technique or history or just straight up blowing each others minds with things you have discovered along the road, and discovering more about this amazing limitless world of music we have to get lost in. Old stuff new stuff, treasures from the future or the past.

Favourite Album of 2020:
Meridian Brothers – Cumbia del Pichamán

Was hugely excited to see Meridian Brothers release a new album this year. I got given a record of theirs for my birthday some years back and always look out for what they are up to next. I was even more excited to see it was released on Bongo Joe my friends label in Geneva. A real fun album and definitely worth a good listen or 8. Favourite Album of 2020!!

Swamp Dogg – ‘Answer Me My Love’

I was writing with Marlon Williams earlier this year and he asked me if I’d heard this Swamp Dogg album. The freedom in the production, the cinematic approach and the beautiful combination of old and new makes this album feel so fresh. It’s an amazing fearless album and feels like a real labor of love.

The Rolling Stones – ‘Moonlight Mile’

I love to see where music is used in conjunction with image to bring it into a whole new context. Also a great way to rediscover some things that you haven’t heard for a while. Songs come back into some beautiful present context and you carry them through the next few days with you. This song was used to great effect in the Sopranos, I guess I watched a lot of television this year!

The Seeds – The Seeds

I rediscovered this album a few weeks back. It seemed to sum up totally how I was feeling. I put it on really late and wandered around in the garden in the dark, it just had such an atmosphere and a weird longing feeling that took me over. Again I think it’s the simple repetive trance thing I must be a total sucker for ha ha! Every track on this is pure hormonal teenage loser rebel classic.

Baxter Dury – ‘I Am Not Your Dog’

This song and video had me totally spellbound for days. The richness of the production and the strange minimal story. I’ve become a big fan of Baxter Drury because of his lightness of touch and his being unafraid to either mix up all the colours or just use a few. He is really worth a good look into. When I was watching Scarface I recognized that this is filmed over the road from the hotel with the horrible shower scene.


Brittany Howard – ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’

Every piece of music that Brittany Howard touches is perfection. This cover is so huge yet so tender, appropriate for all major life events — births, marriages, divorces, deaths, pandemics. If you haven’t already fervently listened to everything Howard has ever done, 2019’s Jaime basically calmed me down and got me through this year.

Brittany Howard · You’ll Never Walk Alone


Kōtiro – ‘Force Field’

One of my fave local tracks of 2020 is Force Field by Kōtiro, the superb musical project of Ana Chaya Scotney. I had sworn off loop pedals after seeing far too many men pairing them with minor 7th chords, but honest to goddess Kōtiro has changed everything for me. This track makes exceptional use of loops with Ana’s stacked vocals oscillating between lullaby and intense invocation. The accompanying video tells the story of arising and carrying on after death, using the story of Hine Titama transforming into Hine Nui Te Pō to take us on a journey that’s messy yet divine. This song so beautifully embodies a deep magical force field of energy and I wanna do a standing ovation every time I hear it.

Secrets of the Sun

It has been a true pleasure watching Secrets of the Sun evolve into a musical powerhouse over the last year. IMO they are some of the best songwriters around, with their sound ranging from sunken dirges to spangling 80’s goth luminescence. We were lucky to get a second track from SOTS early this year – the ominous ‘Wretched Tracks’. Lead singer Mina’s vocals etch out an unsettling refrain supported by perfectly dissonant backing vocals, while Aimee crafts some of the best guitar lines this side of The Cure. Word on the street is they’re recording a debut LP and I cannot fucking wait.

Finn Johansson painting with his mum

This year we all had to jump to doing shit online and let’s be honest, a lot of it was glitchy af. Pōneke’s Finn Johansson embraced the chaos and gave us Finnfest during lockdown. Finnfest included performances including ‘Finn Plays Every Song He Knows In One Go’ (available on his FB page), but my fav part of Finnfest was Finn painting a moody Bob Ross pic with his mum. Turns out music doesn’t always have to be about the playing, sometimes music is about connecting with your mum and some paint, and holy shit the results are actually really impressive.

Harry Styles covering Peter Gabriel’s ‘Sledgehammer’

This year was truly fruitful in terms of excellent covers. Another one that I can literally barely stand is Harry Styles taking an axe to Sledgehammer. This cover is so refined, so restrained, so sensual, appropriate for exactly only one kind of life event – banging. I feel like a creep every time I listen to this but I cannot stop.



DJ2FUK2 – Dog Song EP (The Big Fresh Collective)

A massive debut release for Tāmaki Makaurau based DJ2FUK2 AKA Jon Hardcastle at the start of 2020 via The Big Fresh Collective which actually happened to fall on the same day as New Zealand went into full Lockdown for the first time! Featuring top tier remixes from Go Nuclear, Keanu Raves, Epsile and a special "Clay Louis Mutt Mix"

Eyeliner – Drop Shadow (Orange Milk Records)

Eyeliner AKA Disasteradio AKA Luke Rowell is my fucking HERO & I absolutely love getting pissed in my little ghetto cabin in Redwood and forcing it upon my hood as mates.

Ultraviolet – ECH003 – ‘G0-45T’ / ‘U’ (Echo Train Records)

Going out to two of my favourite Ōtautahi brothers Benjamin & William for this one! Echo Train Records was started this year by local beat hooligan and good friend of mine Benjamin Hunt AKA Jaga AKA Mr Muscle AKA one half of FIGHT LEGENDZ <3 Featuring 3 stellar EP’s from Jaga, Social Sport & Ultraviolet with this one so far being my personal pick of the bunch by the homie UV laying down a couple of fucking heaters!

Juke Aid: Footmahi For The Bushfires (The Big Fresh Collective)

Big ups to my brother in arms Paploco AKA Aaron Ashworth who’s been toughing it out in Melbourne all year for helping me come up with probably the most important musical venture that I’ve ever been involved with in my life so far – JUKE AID: Footmahi For The Bushfires is a non for profit, Footwork & Juke inspired compilation album where artists from all over Aotearoa & the rest of the world have donated tracks in support of The Victims of the ongoing Australian Bushfires.


Coming hot out of Christchurch via way of Burnside it’s the latest member to join the active vigilante justice crew that is the Redwood Patrol – DJ Rugged Shark. His tune headlined the infamous annual 160BPM special Footmahi Volume #005 release we dropped back in May for New Zealand Music Month featuring 100% Kiwi producers from The Dirty South all the way up to Mount Smart Stadium in Auckland with this tasty boy racer bootleg video to go alongside it!


Those 24 hours where we all thought there was gonna be a new Postal Service album.


The Princess Chelsea + Simon Ward show at the Wunderbar!

Princess Chelsea is such a huge inspiration to me and I am such a fan of Simon Ward’s work!! One of the best gigs of all time!! There were lots of weird bootleg Pokémon there! Hard to explain.

My music pal Port Lucian covering my song Bicycle Weather!!!

I am such a big fan of them and am so honoured and they made something a million times better than my version and I could not be more grateful!! They also released a cool EP called ‘Prince of Oddities’ and it is beautiful!!

Watching Frankie Cosmos and Alex G live streams during lockdown!

They both had to cancel their NZ tours but I spent a lot of time during lockdown glued to my phone watching their livestream shows on Instagram! Alex G spent a lot of time being like “why is the screen sideways, how do I get it not sideways, especially if the charger is at this end of the phone, but then all the comments will be sideways…” Top show!

Bedbug‘s latest album life like moving pictures

Bedbug is one of my favourite artists ever, everything they make is such an inspiration to me and their albums almost feel like they so have so much world building and lore. their music is so intimate though, everything feels very lived in. My favourite album of the year and I encourage everyone to listen to their music!!



OTTO – Dairy Adventure

Joe Locke showed me OTTO last year some time, they do a great cover of “About You Now” by Sugababes.
I love this song. It’s super cute, fun and helps me bounce to work through the cess pool of humanity without a care in the world.

Phoebe Bridgers – ‘Kyoto’ (Copycat Killer Version)

I walked to Joe’s house down the bike track listening to this song on repeat while pretending I was in Poke’mon because I’m bitch.

Eric Clapton – ‘Stand and Deliver’ written by Van Morrison
(Anti-lockdown song)

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha.
Nah, for real though, someone take these old mutts out back and put them down. I listened to 7 seconds of this song and it sucked.

Me buying Blink 182’s classic discography on CD and record.

This year I spent money that I earned from my job on this collection because I’m a fucking idiot.

CHARLI XCX – How I’m Feeling Now

If you don’t like Charli, you’re a narc (probably a cop) and I will never trust you. When I bought this record it had a sticker on the cover that read “The Ultimate Lockdown Album” and I was like “haha so tru, Charli, I love it”.


Imugi’s EP Dragonfruit

I’ve been mates with and watching these honeys come up through the Auckland indie scene for years, so it’s a bit of a proud uncle moment for me seeing them release such a stellar EP. It really solidified Carl as one of my top Aotearoa-based producers and Yery as one of my top lyricists. My favourite track is definitely ‘Y U Always Actin Like A Fool’ featuring Church & AP.

The ‘You About To Lose Your Job’ Remix

With the growing momentum surrounding the Black Lives Matter movement in 2020, lest we forget the amazing and hilarious remixes of this incredible woman showing the resilience and relentless humour of black people everywhere.

Lady Gaga’s newest album Chromatica

I’m not the biggest Gaga fan, but I am gay, and incredibly dramatic, and this album was great to listen to on my daily government sanctioned walks during lockdown. My favourite track would have to be ‘Sour Candy’ featuring the iconic BLACKPINK.

Lady Shaka’s lockdown parties

I stumbled upon Lady Shaka during Filth’s online party during lockdown. This UK-based angel is the only DJ I’ve ever woken up at 8am to dance along to. She also DJs for IAMDDB, is a dancer, and curates London’s Pulotu Underworld – a club night celebrating Pacific culture and artists. You can find and follow her on instagram @ladyshaka

Stan Walker’s niece on his track ‘Tua’ or ‘Bigger

I stumbled upon the Maori version of this waiata while scrolling through Instagram. At first, I was like, “aw nice work, Stan. This is pretty cute.” Little did I know I’d be absolutely floored by his niece singing the last line on the song. I cried. A lot. While screaming like the massive gaybo I am, “yes, we can be bigger! You’re so small, but you’re gonna be big one day,” and that just makes me really happy. I love brown babies, what can I say?

Delaney Davidson and Barry Saunders Summer Tour Announced

Chris Cudby
/ Wednesday 9th December, 2020 11:40AM


Well-deserved joint recipients of the 2020 Tui award for Best Country Artist, Delaney Davidson and Barry Saunders (The Warratahs) are reigniting the creative flame that gifted the world their collaborative album Word Gets Around, embarking on a three date tour in January and February. Sporting back catalogues that are second to none, there’ll be much hooting and hollerin’ as the two Aotearoa songwriting titans come together with band to bring the good times in Auckland, Wellington and Lyttelton this summer. You can read all about the origins of their very special, generation-spanning project in our recent interview with Davidson here and commit the details for these strictly limited capacity events to memory…

Undertheradar proudly presents…

Delaney Davidson and Barry Saunders

Live in Concert, with their band

Saturday 23rd January – Loons, Lyttelton

Friday 29th January – Wine Cellar, Auckland

Friday 12th February – Meow, Wellington

Tickets on sale from 9am, Friday 11th December via Banished Music

Watch the clip for the foot-stomping title track to Delaney Davidson and Barry Saunders’ album Word Gets Around…

Press release:

Delaney Davidson and Barry Saunders (The Warratahs) reignite the runaway success of their firecracker collaborative album Word Gets Around to tour New Zealand in early 2021. Smashing the songs that took out the Country Music Artists of 2020 award with their infectious combination of rockin’ country and swaggering, stomping shanty they serve up another smoking hot serving of good time tunes alongside their band.

Delaney Davidson and Barry Saunders met in a church. They were soundchecking for the Churches Tour with Marlon Williams and Tami Neilson. Barry playing old gospel songs and Delaney chugging out his signature blues trance thump. The connection was immediate. Barry joked about being fused together by lightning in a deal made in blood forever. Davidsons ears pricked up. Since then they have toured NZ a few times together and produced an album of songs with the rocking strength and dark power of Davidson previous work naturally paired with the heartfelt, straight dealing and traditionalism of Barry’s past. A combination you can’t miss.

Limited shows, limited capacity, so get a ticket while you can!
Tickets on sale from Banished Music, 9am, 11th December